1. #1
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    Question What does one have to do...?

    I'm just wondering what the best way to get hired for a full time federal firefighting postion is. I'm currently certfied FF1, Driver/Operator, HazMat Technician, EMT-I and Fire Inspector, almost have my associates degree and have been doing part-time or volunteer work for over 5 years. Despite all that, even though I'm mostly applying for GS-3 spots I keep getting the boot on all the appications I submit. Is it impossible to get one of these jobs without the DOD cert?

    I'm not bitter, I'm just curious if I should stop applying for these jobs until I get some more time/school/certs under my belt.

    Thanks in advance for the help.

    Brad
    Brad A. Ingersoll
    Assistant Chief
    Maple Bluff Fire Department
    Blooming Grove, Burke, Maple Bluff EMS

    Badgerland FOOLS
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  2. #2
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    Default FED JOBS

    Make sure your certs are IFSAC approved and if you have any veterans preference make sure you claim it. It helps to have those two items in your favor when you're applying for a federal job. Also, if you're applying with a department that has a flying mission get your ARFF knocked out. I'm not sure what your resume looks like, but remember that a federal resume format is a little bit different.

  3. #3
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    Default I don't know what the problem is...

    We hire GS4's with no experience or training. They have one year to obtain State EMT, DoD FFI & FFII, Class B DL and HazMat Ops & Awareness. We have a mix of new GS4's, some fairly new GS5's, even more GS6's and the majority were recently upgraded to GS7's. Having all your D/O certs is a requirement for GS6 and above...

  4. #4
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    Default Re: I don't know what the problem is...

    [QUOTE]Originally posted by Sparky02
    Make sure your certs are IFSAC approved and if you have any veterans preference make sure you claim it. It helps to have those two items in your favor when you're applying for a federal job. Also, if you're applying with a department that has a flying mission get your ARFF knocked out. I'm not sure what your resume looks like, but remember that a federal resume format is a little bit different.[QUOTE]

    Unfourtunatly for me the only certification that I have from Wisconsin that is IFSAC approved is my Firefighter 1. Another bummer is that because I've never had any active duty time during my 8 years of National Guard service I can't claim any veterans preference. As for my resume format, I just filled out the stuff on www.usajobs.opm.gov and subitted everthing on-line. Is there a better way to do this?


    Originally posted by devildog4
    We hire GS4's with no experience or training.
    This is a HUGE part of why I'm super confused. None of the jobs I'm applying for are above the GS-4 level and none require any training, especially ARFF, which I don't have yet. I've talked to firefighters on the military posts I've vistited through my National Guard career and none of them have had any eperience. So why can I not even make it past the first round with 5 years various experience, FF certs, HazMat and EMT? Kind of frustrating...

    Brad
    Last edited by 911brad; 09-24-2004 at 11:17 PM.
    Brad A. Ingersoll
    Assistant Chief
    Maple Bluff Fire Department
    Blooming Grove, Burke, Maple Bluff EMS

    Badgerland FOOLS
    EGH-PTB-FTM

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    Default resume

    Then the only thing I can think of is your resume. Take the job description from the announcement for the position you want. Read through it and try to make sure your resume includes as many of the job requirements that were listed in the announcement. Kind of "tailor" your resume to each position you apply for. However, make sure you can back up your claims so you are not accused of padding your resume.

    Also when you write your resume remember the first step is a computer or HRO person scanning the resume for key words, try to use the same kinds of terms used in the announcements but also make sure a non-fire person understands what you are talking about. It doesn't matter how qualified you are, if the HRO process doesn't understand you meet the requirements your resume will never make it to the desk of someone who will recognize your abilities.

    I'm not sure if you are willing to relocate, but like devildog said, there are jobs out there.

  6. #6
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    Default

    I'm not sure if you are willing to relocate, but like devildog said, there are jobs out there.
    I'm very willing to relocate and have been putting in for jobs all over the country hoping to get a bite.

    I'll try and edit my resume and see what happens.

    Thanks so much for the advice and help guys.

    Stay safe

    Brad
    Brad A. Ingersoll
    Assistant Chief
    Maple Bluff Fire Department
    Blooming Grove, Burke, Maple Bluff EMS

    Badgerland FOOLS
    EGH-PTB-FTM

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    Default This might help you feel better...

    Sparky02 is right. I called them, and after selecting someone else, I waited until the next opening and resubmitted another application, only this one included all the KSA's listed on the new vacancy announcement (knowledge, skills and abilities I think). Got the job!

    Don't copy word for word, but if the vacancy announcement says something like "Required to conduct weekly inspection of fixed fire protection systems and equipment on all buildings on base", then on your resume put something like:

    "I performed regular testing and inspection of various types of fire protection systems on various buildings located thoughout the facility"

    So you understand...I was a GS4 FF applying for a GS4 FF and they told me I was not qualified...a scanner nowadays (is that really a word?) picks up "keywords" on your resume. In fact, there are books about how to use the proper keywords for each government position
    that are for sale...
    Last edited by devildog4; 09-29-2007 at 02:53 PM.

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    Unhappy Bumps in the road

    I would like to start off by saying all of my certifications are Pro- Board. I have FFI, FFII, Haz-Mats, and an EMT card. I have applied for jobs and have gotten numerous 100's for a rating (GS 4, 5, and 6 jobs), but my name isn't even being sent to the hiring department because of the enormous amount of vets on the list. I just applied for a GS-4 job and I didn't make the list because there were 11 vets ahead of me. I feel that every job I apply for this is the situation. Can a veteran use their veteran status twice? If a vet gets a job because of his veteran status, can he/she use that status again to transfer to another base?
    It has happened to me before- I am so frustrated by this. I know that the vets deserve some extra consideration, but time after time this is getting disappointing.
    Is there any way to get a firefighting position without vet status? Are there locations where vets are more likely to apply or less likely to apply?
    Thank you for the info.

  9. #9
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    Post

    Same here!! I put in for Carderrock & Walter Reed but was not rated for the position because a sufficient number of veterans applied who were referred for consideration. CPO told me there was 11 vets on the Carderock List. Can anyone tell me what would be my chances for the Fort Meade job?
    Last edited by baxter84; 10-01-2004 at 08:19 PM.

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    Default gettin started

    It is true that vets have have an advantage of getting a federal job. Only fair, thats how I got in. However, your vet preferance has no effect for a career position against a permanent employee (basically your vet preferance helps you get in the system). Once you are in all permanent employees are equal vets and non-vets. So with that said, if you want to work as a firefighter in the federal government and have no vet preference....you may have to take a job that gets you a foot in the door. Granted it may not be doing what you would like, but it's a start.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: gettin started

    Originally posted by Sparky02
    It is true that vets have have an advantage of getting a federal job. Only fair, thats how I got in. However, your vet preferance has no effect for a career position against a permanent employee (basically your vet preferance helps you get in the system). Once you are in all permanent employees are equal vets and non-vets. So with that said, if you want to work as a firefighter in the federal government and have no vet preference....you may have to take a job that gets you a foot in the door. Granted it may not be doing what you would like, but it's a start.
    I think that pretty well sums it up, most of the bases that hire alot from outside the system usually are not the most desirable to work for (either location or reputation). If you can, get into the system where ever, then move on to where you want to be once you have permanent status.

    Don't overlook the federal wildland agencies (US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, US Fish and Wildlife, National Park Service etc), while mostly temporary seasonal positions they do have permanent positions which can be a foot in the door to the DoD structure departments and you may actually find you like the wildland agencies.

  12. #12
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    Wink Try this company

    This company has helped me a great deal. This company can be pricey, but you have to spend money to make money!... I can say it was the best money I spent.

    Go to resume-place.com
    Last edited by mattdog240; 10-16-2004 at 08:20 AM.

  13. #13
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    Default

    Fedweek now has a book out to help people write a Federal resume, I've seen their Federal Employees handbook and it is extremely useful, if they did as good a job on the resume book it should be very helpful and it's only $9.95. If you order it I'd suggest spending another $9.95 for the employees guide, its full of the kind of information HRO never seems to know.

    http://www.fedweek.com/Publications/default.asp




    I copied this from the website:



    From the Publishers of FEDweek, the federal government?s largest information resource? We are proud to announce the launch of The Complete Guide to Writing a Federal Resume.

    This book was written specifically for you and is designed to help you meet the requirements for written materials in seeking a new federal job or advancement within the federal government. There is no longer a single, required method of applying for federal employment. In fact, most federal agencies are moving toward the resume (either paper or electronic) as the preferred method of applying for jobs.

    That?s why we?ve just published The Complete Guide to Writing a Federal Resume and all current federal employees, retirees and private sector professionals who are looking for a federal job need this all-inclusive guide.

    Here?s a partial list of the table of contents:

    Finding a Federal Job
    Should I Apply Using a Resume or an Application Form?
    The Federal Resume
    Preparing to Draft Your Resume
    What to Cover (and not cover) in a Resume
    The Designing of Your Federal Resume
    Your Accomplishments (including a worksheet)
    What if You Use an OF-612?
    Knowledges, Skills and Abilities (KSAs)
    Cover Letters and Thank You Letters
    Interactive Worksheets
    The Do?s and Don?t?s for Federal
    Resume Cover Letters
    Contains Many Sample Federal
    Resumes and Cover Letters
    And Much More.
    This book is a ?must have? for:

    All federal employees
    Federal managers and supervisors
    Human resources professionals and federal libraries
    Military retirees beginning their second career with the federal government
    All private sector workers that wish to apply for federal government positions.
    Simply put, designing and writing your resume is not an easy task. You must highlight your accomplishments, qualifications, experience, etc. all while keeping it brief and easy to follow. The Complete Guide to Writing a Federal Resume will show you how to do this. It also gives a complete list of ?result and action? words to use in your cover letter and resume as well as a list a frequently misspelled or misused words or phrases.

    ?In today?s competitive job market, especially the federal job market, this new interactive book is a must have and is guaranteed to help you.?
    Don Mace, Publisher
    FEDweek

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    Cool thanks

    mattdog,
    I appreciate you showing me this company. It isn't my resume that is the problem, it is the alarming number of veterans that are applying for these positions who get preference even over someone who has rated a 100.
    As a firefighter I don't think that I should require any outside assistance for KSA writing. The information that goes into a KSA is general/specific on the job training and knowledge. If one can't explain something like the fire tetrahedron how can one be a firefighter? These people aren't going to be with me on an interview so how will their words substitute for my own knowledge in the field of firefighting. This company is taking a cheap shot at genuinely knowledgeable and enthusiastic firefighters who are using their own expertise to try and gain employment. (nothing against those who use it )

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